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Exploring the Issue of Slavery in the Era of the American Revolution

Classroom and Museum Educators

In lieu of our traditional on-site workshop, the Moffatt-Ladd House and Garden, with support from the Vivian Treat Education Fund, is re-imagining this workshop as a sustained online inquiry into the history and legacy of slavery in Northern New Englang. Beginning on January 12, 2021 we will investigate the history of slavery in Portsmouth and New England; explore the spaces in which the enslaved and enslavers interacted online; discover how a brave group of enslaved men wrote the 1779 Petition of Freedom, and learn how to have an important discussion about race in a class or public setting, while examining our own biases.


Please send queries to:
Jennifer Belmont-Earl
Education Coordinator

Our 2019 Presenters


JerriAnne Boggis

Black Heritage Trail of New Hampshire

JerriAnne holds an M.A. in Writing and Communications from Rivier College and a B. S. in Business Management from Southern New Hampshire University. She is the Director of the New Hampshire Black Heritage Trail, and is a writer, educator and political activist.

Barbara M. Ward, Ph.D.

Moffatt-Ladd House & Garden.
Barbara has an A.B. in history from Connecticut College and an M.A. and Ph.D. from Boston University in American and New England Studies. She has taught history, decorative arts, museum studies, and material culture at Boston University, Yale University, the University of Delaware, Salem State University, the University of New Hampshire, the Tufts University Museum Certificate program, and the Massachusetts College of Art and Design.

Jared Hardesty, Ph.D.

Associate Professor History                                                                                 Western Washington University

Jared has a Ph.D. in History from Boston College.  He is an Associate Professor of History at Western Washington University.  He is the author of Black Lives, Native Lands, White Worlds: A History of Slavery in New England (Amherst and Boston: Bright Leaf, 2019).



Beginning on January 12, explore slavery in New England, the genesis of the 1779 Petition of Freedom, biases, and how you can use local resources to explore difficult topics on tours and in the classroom.  Teachers will receive credit hours upon completion of each zoom workshop.  The first zoom lecture and discussion, Confronting Slavery in Early New England: History, Sources, and Interpretation, will be given by Dr. Jared Hardesty on Tuesday, January 12, at 6:30 PM.  It is free for all participants.


The Moffatt-Ladd House and Garden, with support from the Vivian Treat Education Fund, is excited to announce that Dr. Jared Ross Hardesty, Associate Professor of History at Western Washington University, will present two zoom lectures and discussions on the history of slavery in New England.  Dr. Hardesty is the author of Black Lives, Native Lands, White Worlds: A History of Slavery in New England (University of Massachusetts Press, 2019).  This important work is the first comprehensive look at slavery throughout New England in more than fifty years.  In it, Hardesty explores the lives of enslaved men and women; how New England became very wealthy off of the slave trade; the connection between New England and the Carribean.  His meticulous research lays to rest the notion that slavery was more benign or non-existent here, and clarifies ways in which enslaved people’s lives were different in the towns and farms of the North than they were under the plantation system of the South.   On Tuesday, January 12, at 6:30 PM Hardesty will give a lecture, geared towards the needs of teachers and museum educators, entitled “Confronting Slavery in Early New England: History, Sources and Interpretation.”  This session will include a discussion of primary source materials and tips on finding research materials and documents and incorporating them into lesson plans and museum education programs.  Teachers can earn credit hours upon completion. His second presentation, on Thursday, January 14, at 6:30 PM will be open to the public. To register for a session please email Jennifer Belmont-Earl at  You will receive a zoom link ahead of time.

These free lectures will kick off the Moffatt-Ladd House and Garden’s public winter continuing education series, made possible by the Vivian Treat Education Fund.  Admission is free and open to the public, but donations are welcome and will benefit the educational mission of the Moffatt-Ladd House and Garden.  Participants will be given access to a primary source and bibliography.  To register and receive the link to these online lectures and discussions, email Jennifer Belmont-Earl at


Please email Jennifer Belmont-Earl at to register for these educational sessions, or call (603) 430-7968.  You will be emailed a Zoom link ahead of time.


In 1779, twenty enslaved men from Portsmouth made a courageous and eloquent bid for freedom by writing and signing a petition and submitting it to the New Hampshire State Legislature.  Two of these enslaved men, Windsor Moffatt and Prince Whipple (who is believed to have written the Petition), resided in what is now known as the Moffatt-Ladd House and Garden (

The Moffatt-Ladd House and Garden has piloted a school program with a Museums for America Grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services which makes the history of enslaved people more relevant to students, especially in light of recent events which have brought the issue of race to the forefront of our national discourse.   In order to bring this program to the widest audience possible we are opening a series of online lectures and discussions up to educators in the winter of 2021.

The Moffatt-Ladd House and Garden

The Moffatt-Ladd House & Garden is a National Historic Landmark owned and operated by The National Society of The Colonial Dames of America in the State of New Hampshire.  The museum interprets the history of the inhabitants of the house, both enslaved and free, from 1763 through 1900 within the context of American, New Hampshire, and Portsmouth history.  


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